Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Muslim charity cleared for donations


Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Charity raided by FBI cleared for donations
Gregg Krupa / The Detroit News

SOUTHFIELD -- Contributions to an Islamic charity in Southfield remain legal despite an FBI raid on Sept. 18, according to federal officials.
The Life for Relief and Development has not been designated by the federal government as an organization that provides support for terrorists, according to Bob Beeckman, a spokesman for the FBI in Detroit.
FBI agents from the Joint Terrorism Task Force raided the offices of the organization Sept. 18, but still unclear are the reasons behind the raid.
"The search warrant is based on criminal statutes, and I can't go any farther," Beeckman said.
Local Muslim leaders said that the information that donations remain legal will help assuage rampant concerns in their community, at the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan, when Muslims are required to make charitable donations, or zakat.
Life for Relief and Development is a popular, 15-year-old charity and one of the largest Muslim relief groups in North America.
Muslims have long considered it safe for donations, especially amid increasing federal scrutiny of Muslim charities in the wake of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.
Federal law enforcement officials said this summer, amid large demonstrations in Metro Detroit against the Israeli bombardment of Lebanon, they would increase enforcement efforts in the wake of public statements in support of the militias of Hezbollah, considered by the United States to be a terrorist group.
"It's a big deal because people in the Muslim community are wondering who they will give their zakat to," said Dawud Walid, executive director of the Council on American Islamic Relations.

1 comment:

Khalid said...

As-Salaamu 'Alaykum Dawud

Isn't it funny how a charitable organization having a supposed tax issue with the IRS makes the front page of the news with a caption size of a major world event?

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